It was a literacy class yesterday. I have been struggling with a number of them trying to understand why they find it hard to articulate one sound. I would point to the letter "p" but they would not just say the "p" sound they would add a destinct long vowel behind it so it would sound like "pa". The problem with this is that in reading and writing it makes it hard to formulate words phonetically. So finally I realised that we had to talk about vowels and consenants. We called the vowels "op nois" or "open sounds", and then I went through the vowels and showed by making the noises, how different they were from the other letters. Wow! You should have seen some lights switch on!! Unbelievable! It baffles me over and over again how I take so many things for granted, the fact that letters together make different sounds and so many other things. It's when I get blank stares that I realise I've missed something. But boy is it great to see people catching on. A real blessing!
Not everyone has caught on though. I have a couple of ladies who really, really are struggling. But they are still determined and that's a big part of the battle. I keep telling myself that even if they don't become good readers or writers, if they can read even a little bit and even write their name, then they are steps ahead of where they were before we started. And that is a blessing in itself.